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Attorneys Representing Individuals, Businesses Seeking Water Refund

Attorneys from the Alexandria-based law office of John Charles Bennison, the office representing clients seeking refunds in an ongoing battle over water payment refunds sought by Fairfax County from the City of Falls Church, held a press conference Thursday afternoon to address the matter.

Attorneys from the Alexandria-based law office of John Charles Bennison, the office representing clients seeking refunds in an ongoing battle over water payment refunds sought by Fairfax County from the City of Falls Church, held a press conference Thursday afternoon to address the matter.

“We have let the authorities know that we have several clients that are interested in getting a refund and we feel that there is no argument that they can put forth that they shouldn’t get a refund,” said Attorney John Charles Bennison.

In an interview with the News-Press earlier this week, Fairfax County Supervisor Penny Gross said $127,877 is being sought, but that amount is only for county use of Falls Church water, and does not include the claims of overcharging from individuals and businesses. Those parties are now being represented by Bennison and his office. Bennison said he could not say how many people he will be representing and how much their claims will be worth.

“We haven’t decided how we are going to proceed, with individual cases or a class action suit,” Bennison said. “Quite frankly, we haven’t had a response from the city yet, so we haven’t decided exactly how we are going to go forward. … Maybe we’ll be able to work something out with the city, and if not, we’re prepared to go forward.”

Bennison said that if the courts grant a class action suit, all those deemed affected by overcharging would receive a refund. The Falls Church system serves 120,000 customers, and over 100,000 are in Fairfax County.

According to state statute, records from the past three years can be considered when calculating a refund.

“We don’t have the numbers yet,” Bennison said. “It could be substantial.”